Sunday, December 09, 2007

"'Largest phone bank ever'"

Ben Smith:
A theme of today's rally, about to start here in Columbia, S.C. -- like the Obama-Oprah events in Iowa yesterday -- is converting the crowds into organization.
Two campaign organizers just took the stage after the 90s hip-hop act Arrested Development to urge the crowd to join the Obama campaign's text-message program by sending a message in. They've also been requiring people who enter the stadium to fill out detailed supporter cards.

More ambitious, the campaign printed what the campaign said are 36,426 white fliers, above, each with a call script on the front and four first names and phone numbers on the back, each with a set of check marks next to it: "Obama Supporter...Leaning Obama...Undecided...Non-Supporter..."

This isn't the first time a campaign has done this, but the Obama campaign is touting it as "the largest phone-bank ever" and the script begins, "Hello, _____. This is [your name]. I am calling from Williams-Brice stadium where several thousand South Carolinians are gathered to see Presidential candidate Barack Obama and his supporter Oprah Winfrey."

There are cellphone "cows" -- boosters -- in the stadium parking lot.

"We know you've got free nights and weekends, so everybody can make this phone call," Obama aide Anton Gunn told the crowd.

Most fliers seem to have been handed out, and many in the audience seemed to be making calls. "Brian" from the Guinness Book of World Records appeared on stage to certify their victory in the category of "largest phone bank."



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